Box Violin Swells

A homemade box violin by Dave Hilowitz....

The story

In October 2019, I built several violins, including this one out of a long paintbrush box. Since then, I’ve used it on countless tracks and a couple film scores. This is an ensemble patch featuring 8 layers–my take on a classic “swells” articulation.


Leave a review to let others know what you thought of the instrument!

  • Sustain Swells is lovely!

    "Sustain Swells" sounds really good. The sound of "Swells" was a little overblown for us. Over all it was well recorded and very cinematic and could even use it for pop strings. Thanks for sharing!

    Clay and Kelsy22 October 2021
  • Personally not hearing the hype of the other reviews here...

    Rather than giving the sound a unique character, the box design has translated into a very mid range heavy sound almost as if a band pass filter has been put on the instrument. I guess I was just expecting a lovely low mid honk instead. Also some of the samples are producing strange artefacts towards the end of the sustain which doesn't help the playability. However, it's certainly not bad by any means and there are some interesting sounds to be had here.

    R.Treves20 October 2021
  • String magic in a box!

    Nothing is missing from this little magic box. I LOVE IT. At first I picked the "swells" patch and I was like "I wish there was a patch without the sample dying"... And then I said, wait, there's a sustain patch. And that was it, I was sold. Excellent UI, excellent sound, very well done.

    Alex Raptakis16 October 2021
  • Thin string sounds for delicate moments

    While certainly not traditional, these sounds work great when you need a delicate, clear sound for tender moments. They have a distant quality to them that plays nicely with other strings. A worthy addition to your PianoBook collection!

    Sam Ecoff14 October 2021
  • A good sound in a small box

    Obviously not your typical violin, but definitely a great sound! I'm sure it's due to the small box shape of the instrument, but this sound does favor the higher registry of note tones. But the ability to go outside the natural range of this instruments actual playability opens a new door to the possibilities and inspiration this instrument has to offer. After playing it a while, it kind of started to resemble a bagpipe sound, with the lower notes sounding like drones, and then the lower you go, makes it feel like a good tool for soundscapes and ambience. Well done!

    XentiirTV13 October 2021
  • An early PB Classic holds up over time

    You don't need words for this wonder, just load it up and use your ears. It swells and it sustains and it will always be near to hand for me' Upper tones that hit the sweet spot!

    Consterdine12 October 2021